So, you might be a barber who contemplates acquiring a detachable clipper because you work in a shop that services a high volume of customers every day. If you so, first and foremost, congratulations to you and your community! The place you live might have finally gotten over the whole pandemic situation. The amount of clients entering and exiting your shop might resemble bees going in and out of their hive on a busy day. Though realistically, you probably are a barber working with home service setup who needs to work with clients faster to cut down on travel time.
Either way, you need something that goes through hair easily and swiftly. Enter the detachable clipper. Detachable clippers are hair clippers that are designed to trim down large volumes of hair really quickly. Think of it this way; your classic adjustable clippers are your precision tools and a detachable clipper is your power tool.
The Detachable Clippers vs Adjustable Clippers Debate:
You might be asking, “why should I feel the need to invest on a tool much more expensive than the standard adjustable clipper? A tool that requires multiple sets of blades that will just drive up the price more?” Honestly, it’s just down to preference and technique. Your classic adjustable clipper might be good enough for you. However, you might be looking for something with that extra oomph to deal with a lot of clients. Something that regular adjustable clippers have have a harder time doing.
Don’t get us wrong, your adjustable might feel good enough to deal with everyday use. Heck, before detachable clippers entered the scene, barbers were working with adjustable clippers just fine! It must be considered however that the tool is there so why not try using it? Further developments into work is marked by increased specialization in the parts that make up the sum. Basically, tools that make the job easier so, why not use them.
Consider as well that you can save the blades on your adjustable clippers by reserving it for more precision handling such as cleaning up a trim. Imagine using a Dremel to cut chop down a tree instead of a chainsaw. We are exaggerating of course. But the analogy works doesn’t it? Let the detachable clippers take the load! Some barbers even prefer using detachable clippers for skin fades because of the variable blade sizes. An excellent explanation on using detachable blades for skin fades could be found here.
Either way, you really cannot choose to have one over the other. There are times when you might need the power and speed of a detachable clipper or the precision and ease of use of an adjustable clipper. Its best to have both ready and close at hand for when a situation calls for it.
Corded or Cordless?
All detachable clippers essentially work the same way. However, a big difference between the best models out there are how they are powered. Some use a battery system while others run plugged into a wall socket. For some barbers, having a cordless clipper is absolutely essential for their technique while others are do not really mind having to work with a corded clipper.
The main benefit of having a cordless clipper is that it is cordless. Obvious right? Handling a tool that is not connected to any cord can open up new techniques or improve upon your rhythm and workflow. You would have to work with and around the cord for corded clippers however but some of us just get used to it. For cordless, you would not have to worry about batteries or charging however.
The main thing to consider with cordless clippers aside from its hair trimming efficiency and performance is its battery life and charge time. Considering that most detachable trimmers run for about 2 to 3 hours nonstop, a busy day might require you to charge your clippers about 2 to 3 times a day. Sometimes, it might be necessary to invest in a second battery pack for your detachable clipper in order to keep working and avoid charging time.
Again it mostly is down to to preference and we definitely can’t tell you how to do your thing. However, if you do consider acquiring a detachable clipper, we have a compilation of what we think are the best detachable clippers out there.
Andis Supra ZR II
The Andis Supra ZR II is a cordless, battery powered detachable clipper that is preferred by many in the trade. An imporvement upon the discontinued Andis Supra ZR, The Supra ZR II features a removable battery pack. This gives the Supra ZR II the option a having a backup battery pack.
Pros: The Andis ZR Supra II has a 5 way switch that switched between speeds. This could be handy for when you need SPMs (strokes per minute.) On its max setting, the blade runs at a powerful 3800 SPMs. This detachable clipper will cut through hair like a hot knife through butter.
The Andis ZR Supra II sports a permanently lubricated rotary motor that delivers power without the need for constant lubrication and maintenance.
The clipper comes free a 000 blade and a 1 blade. Definitely a pro since individual blades could cost about $20 to $30.
The Andis Supra ZR II detachable clipper sports a Lithium-ion powered battery pack that lasts for about 3 hours and charges up to full in 2. Although we recommend purchasing a second battery pack for cordless detachable clippers —when possible— to have a handy backup and cut down on charging time, downtime wont be an issue for the Andis ZR Supra II because its charges to full in 2 hours and lasts for 3. If you find yourself running out but don’t have a backup battery pack, the Andis Supra ZR II comes with a corded adapter.
Regarding ergonomics, the Andis Supra ZR II’s body fits the contours of the hand naturally. At 1.10 lbs. (aprox 0.5 kilos) handling is easy.
Cons: The Andis Supra ZR II detachable clipper leans towards the expensive side. At around $260 to $300, it could potentially make a dent on your budget since with detachable clippers, you would have to buy the detachable blades separately as well.
Bottomline: The Andis Supra ZR II is a solid choice for a cordless detachable clipper and is a favorite among barbers. The option to run 5 different speeds makes this clipper a versatile tool for your arsenal.
Oster Classic 76 Universal Motor Clipper
The Oster Classic 76 is a corded detachable clipper. A true classic as its name suggests. If you went to barber school and have learned about detachable clippers, the Classic 76 is probably what you have practiced with. This has been around for a long time and is still being used up until today because it is an ol’ reliable workhorse. It gets the job done with 0 percent fuss.
Pros: The Oster Classic 76 detachable clipper runs on a heavy-duty universal rotary motor. Universal rotary motors use gears to deliver torque and power to the blades. Although requiring maintenance every now and then, they are more reliable and powerful than permanent rotary motors.
The Oster Classic 76 also comes with a 000 and 1 blade; always a pro with detachable clippers.
The housing of the Oster Classic 76 is tough as nails. If you are prone to dropping your clippers from time to time, the Classic 76 will survive a drop or ten. The grooves on its body also helps with grip and handling. It is aesthetically pleasing as well. It gives off an industrial, brutalist vibe that just accentuates its reputation as a workhorse detachable clipper.
The universal motor in the Oster Classic 76 detachable clipper runs at slower speeds. This allows the Classic 76 to run cooler than other detachable clippers which allow it to be used longer.
Because it is wired, the lack of a need for batteries and a charging stand allows the Oster Classic 76 detachable clipper to be manufactured at a more affordable price.
Cons: Some might be turned off by the Oster Classic 76 detachable clipper’s need for periodic maintenance so we’ll list this as a con.
The Classic 76 weighs 2.2 lbs, (aprox. 1 kg.) Its weight combined with the cylindrical shape and the presence of a cord could potentially take some getting used to ergonomically.
Bottomline: The Oster Classic 76 detachable clipper is a reliable, powerful, and dependable detachable clipper that will always get the job done. Bonus style points in you get it in brown.
Oster Model 10
The Oster Model 10 detachable clipper is essentially a smaller and lighter version of the Oster Classic 76. It delivers the reliability of the Classic 76 in an easier-to-handle package.
Pros: Although it is essentially a smaller Classic 76, the motor inside is the same. It has the same pros as the Classic 76 namely, its universal rotary motor construction which allows it to run cool for longer periods.
Since it The Oster Model 10 detachable clipper’s schtick is that it is a lighter, shorter, and more mobile version of the Classic 76, it sports a 10 foot power cord which allows it to be more mobile than the Classic 76.
The Oster Model 10 detachable clipper also comes with 000 and 1 blades like the Classic 76. Another nice thing about the Model 10 is that its compatible with Classic 76 blades. So, if you have built up a collection of detachable blades for the Classic 76, you could use those for the Model 10 eliminating the need to buy extra blades.
The Oster Model 10 detachable clipper as robust and as affordale as the Classic 76. Need I say more?
Cons: The limitations of the Classic 76 —its power cord— hinders the Oster Model 10 as well although you could easily get used to it.
Even though its a lighter version of the Classic 76, The Oster Model 10 detachable clipper still weighs quite a lot at 1.95 lbs (0.88 kg.)
Bottomline: If you love the Oster Classic 76, you will love its little brother, the Oster Model 10
The Oster Titan detachable clipper, like the Oster Model 10, is a variant of the Oster Classic 76. The Oster Titan’s 2 speed option is what sets it apart from the Classic 76.
Pros: The Oster Titan detachable clipper runs with a universal rotary motor system which is the same as the Model 10 and the Classic 76. This gives it the same benefits that the Classic 76 has; a slow yet powerful, which provides and a cooler performance. It is a bit lighter than the Classic 76 at 1.9 lbs (0.86 kg.)
Its 2 speed feature allows gives the Oster Titan a little more versatility in trimming hair. The slower speed could be used to trim thinner and finer hair while its max speed can be used for thicker hair.
Like the Oster Classic 76 and the Model 10, it comes with 2 blades; a 000, and a 1. It takes blades made for the Classic 76 as well which could save you a a few bucks since The Oster Titan detachable clipper is a little dearer than the Classic 76.
Cons: The Oster Titan detachable clipper, costs about $70 to $90 more than the Classic 76. You get the same speed as the Classic 76 at the max setting of the Oster Titan so you pay quite a bit more for the 2 speed option.
The Oster Titan is also corded like the Classic 76 and the Model 10. This impacts its ease of use.
Bottomline: If you like the performance, reliability, and durability of the Oster Classic 76 but would prefer the versatility of variable speed setting like the Andis Supra ZR II, then pick this up.
Have you noticed the trend yet? The Oster Octane detachable clipper is a cordless and battery powered version of the Oster Classic 76. We love the performance and durability of the Oster Classic 76 so the cordless version will definitely make into our list.
Pros: It is essentially a cordless Classic 76: a pro indeed! For barbers who love the reliability of the Classic 76 but would prefer a cordless system like the Andis Supra ZR II, this is surely a great addition to your toolkit.
The charging stand for the Oster Octane detachable clipper features 2 charging slots. One takes the Octane clipper itself and another takes an Octane battery pack. If you purchase a backup battery pack for the Oster Octane detachable clipper, you can charge both the clipper itself and the backup pack simultaneously. This allows the Oster Octane to perform with no downtime whatsoever.
The Oster Octane detachable clipper uses a Lithium ion battery that lasts for about 2 hours and will run at a constant speed until it looses its juice. Like all the other Oster detachable clippers featured in the list, The Octane comes with a 000 and a 1 blade.
Ergonomically speaking, the Oster Octane comes in a sleeker form factor compared to the Oster Classic 76 which when combined with its cordless nature lead to an easier handling experience.
Cons: The price of an Oster Octane detachable clipper carries quite a bit of heft. At about $400, it could be quite a costly investment considering that you have to buy extra detachable blades. Although if you have Classic 76 blades those are compatible with the Octane as well.
Bottomline: it is the priciest detachable clipper in the list. But, it possesses Oster’s reputation for reliability. For that reason, the Octane is a mainstay in barber shops around the globe.
Wahl 5 Star Mentor
Wahl. Surely you have heard of Wahl. You probably own a few Wahl trimmers and clippers already and for good reason. Wahl is a standard in the barber industry and they offer a detachable clipper system as well. Enter the Wahl 5 Star Mentor detachable clipper.
Pros: Fisrt and foremost, the Wahl 5 Star Mentor comes with 4 detachable blades right out of the box. a 000, 0A, 1, and a 1A. At around $250 this makes the Wahl 5 Star Mentor detachable clipper an easy and affordable option that allows you to start on haircuts such as fades without the hassle and expense of having to purchase additional blades.
The Wahl 5 Star Mentor runs on a brushless rotary motor system that could switch between 2 speeds. The low speed setting gives you 3000 SPM and the high speed setting gives runs at a whopping 3700 SPM, providing you with variety and versatility.
The brushless rotary motor system allows the Wahl 5 Star Mentor to run quietly. Much quieter that something like an Oster Classic 76. This could be a positive consideration in choosing a detachable clipper system because a loud tool could unsettle and potentially even scare children.
Cons: The Wahl 5 Star Mentor is corded. So, if you find it hard working with a corded clipper, take this into consideration
Bottomline: For barbers starting out or for those who want to acquire a detachable clipper system, the 4 blades that comes with the Wahl 5 Star Mentor could potentially save you a few bucks. The Wahl 5 Star Mentor detachable clipper is a budget yet high-quality clipper that carries the Wahl name.
Notes and Points on Detachable Clipper Systems
- Detachable clippers cannot be finely adjusted for blade lengths unlike adjustable clippers. That handy lever on adjustables are not present on detachable clippers systems due to its construction so it is necessary to obtain multiple detachable blades to perform finer trims. This makes detachable clipper systems costlier.
- Because multiple blades are used in detachable clipper systems, the cumulative wear and tear on the individual blades are less compounded compared to an adjustable clipper. Changing guard sizes for adjustable clippers allow you to trim at different lengths but only a single blade itself does all the trimming which means that the blade in an adjustable clipper gets used up more than the individual blades used in detachable clippers.
- Detachable clippers make a lot more noise than regular clippers. When working on children this must be taken into consideration. A loud clipper could potentially make children uncomfortable and make them prone to moving a lot. In worst cases it could scare them off completely.
- Detachable clippers run at slow but powerful speeds. This makes it ideal for trimming hair en masse. Take this property of detachable clippers into consideration as well especially when working with clients with skin tags or moles and take extra care to avoid accidents.
Improve Your Efficiency With a Detachable Clipper
Having a detachable clipper on hand allows you to work faster and be more efficient particularly when dealing with loads of clients on a busy day. With price points ranging from $200 and potentially up to $500 if we take into account the cost of detachable blades, a detachable clipper system will surely set you back by quite a lot but it is an investment that will improve your work.